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Digital Digest – January 7, 2019
Facebook’s Continued Data-sharing Woes
Facebook certainly didn’t leave the drama in 2018. The social media giant is starting the new year with new allegations of oversharing users’ private information. The latest charges accuse Facebook of transferring data from Android users’ apps to the company without their consent. The claim follows The New York Times report that discovered Facebook had been giving business partners, including Netflix, Amazon and Spotify, access to users’ personal data including messages.
Privacy International (PI), the organization pursuing the charges, analyzed 34 popular Android apps and found that 60 percent of the apps transferred data automatically to Facebook when users opened the app. PI claims that the data transfer would happen regardless of if a user has been or is logged into a Facebook account or not.
The data being shared is classified as “events data,” which tells Facebook the specific app the user is using. The apps that automatically transmit the information share the data using a Google advertising ID. The advertising ID serves to let advertisers link information about user behavior from different apps and web browsing into an all-inclusive profile. It can help paint a picture of people’s activities, interests and routines.
Stay tuned if 2019 will be the year Facebook corrects its PII practice woes. As only time will tell!
Make an Impact with These Instagram Metrics in 2019
Moving into 2019, Instagram will continue to be a popular platform for engaging and impacting audiences. Adweek broke down three important metrics to analyze for improving and maximize success on the platform.
First up, engagement rates. This metric helps marketers identify which content works best with their audience. Engagement levels are linked to your post’s exposure on Instagram. The more users that engage with your content, the more likely the Instagram algorithm will favor your content and make it more available to your target audience. Look at engagement rates closely to identify which content to produce in order to continue engaging your audience.
For organic content, Adweek suggests looking at Instagram Stories’ poll metrics. Polls generate real customer insights and feedback with little time or budget required. By asking followers their opinion, it gives brands quick, honest feedback from customers. This insight could potentially help your brand decide where to allocate budget and resources.
And finally, click-through rates. CTRs are important in driving traffic to your website, increasing sales and keeping customers. Instagram limits providing links to your brand’s bio and to the swipe-up story feature. To increase CTR, try testing different CTAs and focusing on branding within IG Stories to increase recognition. Compare CTR rates between Stories and bio links to guide content strategy for future posts.
Overall, it’s important to use these metrics to identify how you can cater toward, and capitalize on, your audiences’ behavior.
Stories Trend is Here to Stay
While Instagram and Snapchat have cracked the code on story sharing, Facebook isn’t up to speed on the trend. eMarketer predicts the story trend is going to be even more popular in 2019, with Instagram continuing to lead the charge. While Facebook has the most users of any social platform, the company continues to fall flat when it comes to story usage on the platform, with only 300 million daily story feature users. Stories are soaring in popularity because they are visual, have a fleeting lifespan, and have the ability to capture moments “in real life” or on the fly as they’re happening.
Illustrated in the eMarketer graph above, the younger Gen Z audience is more likely to watch Snapchat stories compared to their older counterpart, the Millennials. Snapchat, the “originator” of the stories feature, may only have 186 million daily users, but continues to be popular among younger audiences. Instagram reigns supreme in terms of story users with nearly 400 million people using stories on the platform every day.
When it comes to what U.S. users are looking for from the Instagram Stories, as many as 61 percent go to the Stories feature to see what friends are up to and 58 percent go to see unfiltered, authentic content.
All in all, the stories trend isn’t going away in 2019 and, as of late, Instagram remains the king of the trend. Marketers and brands will continue to use the platform organically and for paid media.
Glossary: A/B Testing
A/B testing − Also known as split testing, A/B testing is a method of comparing two versions of an advertisement, a social post or webpage to compare against each other to determine which performs better when all other attributes are kept the same.
Buzzword: Walled Garden
Walled garden − the restricted range of information that subscribers are provided based on the service they have subscribed to. Examples of walled gardens include Facebook and Google, where the user’s data cannot be used for targeting outside of the specific platform.